A parking ticket. Locked out of my apartment because my keys were in my car. I ripped my favorite shirt. I was having a bad day on Wednesday. A really, really bad day. And then I got the call from my buddy Josh while I paced outside my complex.
“Are you watching the game.”
“Yeah, it starts at 5:00.”
“No, not the soccer game, the Mariners-Rays.”
“No, why? Wait. What are you doing watching the Mariners?”
“Just start watching from the beginning.”
As soon as I got in, I threw my bag into the corner and started from the beginning. I’ll admit that it is tough watching every Mariners game lately. Ichiro is wearing prison Yankee pinstripes. Danny Hultzen and Taijuan Walker are still prospects awaiting their September call-ups. Only the savior of the franchise, Jesus Montero, gives us a daily dose of hope. While we’ve put some nice winning streaks together here and there and have been generally giving the Angels and Rangers a hard time, we’re built for 2014.
We did have the bright spot of a six-player no-hitter. That was a good day. The great Northwest was happy that day. And then Ichiro left and the glum of the baseball season was as dark as discarded coffee grounds at Pike Place Market.
In other words, just like my bad day, it has been a bad season.
But that changed with King Felix Hernandez on Wednesday.
All Hail, King Felix of Seattle!
All Hail the Thrower of baseball’s 23rd perfect game!
There’s been so much talk over the past few seasons of trading our beloved monarch. Why keep such a stud if we’re going to loss a hundred games anyways? Why not trade for building pieces and speed along the process? Because we love our superstars and are willing to pay to see a losing team, even if it means greatness can be glimpsed. And Wednesday, we were rewarded as loyal subjects. Don’t want to hear vague affections? Fine. Here are some cold facts:
12 = number of strikeouts King Felix threw to get his perfect game
5 of 6 = strikeouts of the last two innings
95 = speed of last pitch
2 = no-hitters Seattle has thrown this year
3 = number of no-hitters thrown at Seattle this year
7 = number of Seattle pitchers involved no-hitters this year
3 = complete game shutouts King Felix has thrown this year
21,889 = fans watching the game
That’s right, 22,000 fans watched on a Wednesday afternoon their last place team play in a meaningless game. When a man makes a promise as a rookie to throw a no-hitter, throws eight shutouts in a season and has been building towards something great, you watch. We have seen this all before and we know how great it can be. All of the Mariner purists will still watch, even when the rest of the country have written us off.
Let's just say that we call him 'King' for a reason.